Abilene Country Club
Abilene, Texas
Aug. 5-8, 2002

Gerlich matches course record

ABILENE, Texas - Jeremy Frye of Palestine, Texas, was hot right off No. 1, carding three consecutive birdies to help him edge out the competition for top spot on the leaderboard at 66-64-130. Stacy Lewis of The Woodlands, Texas, carded a second-round, 1-over-par 72 to claim the lead in the Girls Division.

The 54-hole tournament, conducted by the American Junior Golf Association, features 120 players representing 12 states and includes 101 Texas natives. It is being held at the par-71 Abilene Country Club. Past champions of the event include PGA TOUR players Scott Verplank (1981, '82), Phil Mickelson (1987) and LPGA Tour players Kelli Kuehne (1992, '93), and Emilee Klein (1990).

Beginning with his warm up on the driving range, Frye was ready to make his move.

"I felt good on the range this morning, and I hit the ball pretty well," Frye said. "I didn't worry about yesterday's scores. I just tried to focus on today."

With near-perfect playing conditions, the 17-year-old felt confident he could post a low score.
"The course sets up well for me," Frye said. "I hit 16 greens and didn't have a bogey."

On No. 14 Frye almost had a hole-in-one but his tee shot skirted about a foot past the hole. He made the birdie putt and advanced to the 539-yard 15th where he put his second shot within 15 feet from 255 yards out. From there he drained his putt to card an eagle, bringing him to 7-under for the day.

"I have never played this well back-to-back," Frye said.

Jeff Gerlich of Austin, Texas, matched the course record and nabbed the low-round of the day at 8-under-par 63.

Gerlich didn't leave much on the course he carded eight birdies and parred the rest of the holes.
"I was good with my short game today," Gerlich said. "This is a short course, so I can hit sand or lob wedge into every green and be sitting pretty good."

While he had a spectacular round today, Gerlich still feels he will have to take it deep tomorrow to come up with a win.

"I wasn't really thinking about winning coming into the event because I haven't been playing well," Gerlich said. "But apparently I am going to have to shoot pretty low tomorrow to have a shot at it since I am still a couple shots back."

Lewis, 17, came off a confident finish in the first round, 1-under-par 70, and made a statement to her fellow competitors off No. 1 with a birdie.

"Today wasn't as good as yesterday, but I saved a lot of pars and bogeys," Lewis said. "I was just trying to stay around par and hopefully I would end up in the top three after today."

Tomorrow Lewis said she plans to go out and be aggressive, attacking flagsticks.

Final-round action begins tomorrow at 7:30 a.m. off No. 1. Tee times will run until 1:21 p.m.

For more information regarding the Abilene Reporter-News Junior, please contact our headquarters at (915) 692-5588.

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